This month we’ve had a lot of new kids join the mat–and a lot of young kids to boot. As a result, the mat has gotten more and more crowded, but the energy level has also become increasingly fun and enjoyable.
At last night’s class, I was finally able to give uniforms to several of the new students. For many folks, this may not seem like a big deal, but let me explain the situation a bit. When new students join the dojo, they get a uniform. I do this primarily because I’ve found that people feel more comfortable when they feel like they’re wearing the appropriate attire for training; both physically, because a gi is better designed for martial arts training, and mentally, because the new student in question doesn’t feel like they’re standing out (or, at least, standing out as much). The challenge, however, is that in our area there are very few places in which you can walk in to buy a uniform. I’m not sure if this is because of where we are located or whether it is because most martial arts supply companies are moving to Internet-based businesses, but it is what it is. As a result, I have taken to stocking gis myself. Most of the time, I have a gi on-hand for new students; however, because we had so many new students, I found myself on short supply.
That’s not a big deal, right? I ordered more, and told the new students that they’d be here soon. The kids waited patiently for them to arrive. (One younger student kept telling me: “Only 5 more sleeps until my uniform is here?” Apparently, he marks time to big events by the number of times he has to go to bed!) Then, the uniforms arrived and…. they’re too big. I had switched supply companies, and the new uniform sizes run larger than the old company. For some of these kids, they’d step into the pants and disappear. I politely explained the situation to everyone and, one two-day-rush delivery later, had the correct sizes at the dojo. The kids were thrilled, and we decided for fun to take the picture you see at the top of this post. (Apologies for the resolution: the iPhone, while cool, is still only so-so when it comes to pictures.)
Class was good–we learned much and had fun. All in all, a great experience!